The Detroit Red Wings made a few moves last season during the free-agent period that helped set them up for the 2022-23 season. One of the things they did was add Ben Chiarot and Olli Määttä to the team’s defensive core.
While the Detroit Red Wings got a lackluster performance from Chiarot, they were pleasantly surprised with what they got out of Määttä, signing him to a mid-season contract extension. But, looking ahead, could there be room to add in another player to the team’s defense core?
It may be a little shocking to be suggesting it since Simon Edvinsson is in the minors and looking to cement a role in the NHL defense core, but there might be room for an extra right-handed shot or a depth addition. Here’s the team’s defense core as of now…
- Pairing 1: Jake Walman – Moritz Seider
- Pairing 2: Olli Määttä – Ben Chiarot
- Pairing 3: Simon Edvinsson – TBD
So even with Edvinsson cracking the roster, there’s room to add another defender or two with the departure of some of the team’s current defenders that are not under contract for next season. This might mean there’s a chance for General Manager (GM) Stever Yzerman to make some moves.
Detroit Red Wings may be on the hunt for some defensemen.
The Red Wings had a whole crop of defensemen going into 2022-23, but it seems like some players will move on from the organization this summer. Here’s the scoop…
Jordan Oesterle: He served as a forward at the tail end of the season and is kind of a Plug’n’Play type of player. Oesterle has been with the Red Wings for the past two seasons. He’s now an unrestricted free agent and will have to be re-signed if the Red Wings want to use him in a similar role in 2023-24. Even if he were brought back, he would likely serve as the team’s seventh defender or be a depth addition.
Robert Hägg: The Red Wings brought in Hägg this season, and he was someone who served in a depth role, getting into 38 games as a bottom-pairing guy. He’s also an unrestricted free agent this off-season and will likely not be returning to the Red Wings for next season.
Gustav Lindström: It sounds like the Red Wings, and Lindström will be parting ways. It was reported overseas that Lindström wants to join a Swedish Hockey League (SHL) team to continue his professional career. He is a restricted free agent who is arbitration eligible with the Red Wings, but it sounds like he is heading back to Sweden.
For the Red Wings, it will be impressive to see which prospects might crack the roster; with Edvinsson the only real shoo-in, there is still room to add a defender or two to help build some depth.
The Red Wings have not made any inkling as to what they may be doing this off-season, but finding a couple of depth defenders or bringing in a solid right-handed shooting defenseman could benefit the team moving forward.
As free agency creeps into view, seeing the scuttlebutt surrounding the Red Wings organization will be interesting.